“Effective Grounding Solutions for System Reliability and Worker/ Public Safety”

March 21, 2023 @ 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm America/New York Timezone
Wentworth Institute of Technology, Beatty 426 (Building: Beatty Hall)
550 Huntington Ave. Boston
MA 02115

Power & Energy Society

Speaker:  Kris Cox, Utility Technical Specialist, Specialized Analysis Engineering (SAE) Inc.

Refreshments start at 6:00pm; Talk begins at 6:30pm

Location:  Wentworth Institute of Technology, Beatty 426 (Building: Beatty Hall) 550 Huntington Ave, Boston, MA 02115

Free Parking at West Parking Lot

(Rsvp on our website: https://site.ieee.org/boston-pes/)

While utilities are leveraging new technology and materials for grid hardening and better data analytics, they often still approach system grounding with a legacy philosophy. This talk will look at Distribution, Transmission and Station grounding practices and why they need to evolve. In the distribution world increased burial of infrastructure & safety incidents are pushing OH pole grounding into the pole hole. This combined with new backfill materials can effectively negate electrode performance. The relationship between arrester performance, pole down ground routing and effective grounding will be explained to illustrate what is required for successful lightning mitigation and reduced equipment failure. On the OH Transmission side of the business, it is commonplace to leave grounding to the last stage of the project, where construction forces are required to install an unknown number of grounds rods /counterpoise /per structure until utility target is met. With the rapid expansion of wind & solar connections to the grid, increases in available fault current at our ageing stations is commonplace. We will look at common soil Resistivity testing issues and grid design solutions. We will also look at what happens to touch & step potential at stations assigned a “hi-split” factor, when the connected Tx structures do not meet grounding targets or copper theft occurs. The common practice of installing communication towers inside the fence will be reviewed a common cause as well for lightning related damage. A list of factors will be examined that will help Stations Asset managers decide where to prioritize their maintenance dollars.

Kris Cox is the Utility Technical Specialist for Specialized Analysis Engineering (SAE) Inc. Prior to his employment with SAE, Kris enjoyed a career with Ontario Hydro/Hydro One Transmission & Distribution Engineering & Operations Divisions. Although engaged in many steering committees and significant reliability/equipment failure/public safety investigations, the complete Overhaul of their Distribution OH&UG standards, materials & work practices were a significant milestone. Today, Kris is enjoying working with Tx, Dx & stations groups across North America as they look to improve their reliability & safety performance.

Free and Open to the Public; RSVP is appreciated Visit the IEEE PES Boston Chapter website for further details – https://site.ieee.org/boston-pes/ For any questions regarding this presentation or any IEEE PES Boston Technical Meetings, please contact Risa Karanxha (risa.karanxha@nationalgrid.com)